Bernie Sanders heads to Iowa with strong lead over Joe Biden, in Democtatic race.
The self-professed democratic socialist has a seven-point lead over Joe Biden, the former vice-president, in the survey by Emerson College.The Iowa caucuses are the first nominating contest in the battle to be the Democratic presidential candidate, and how candidates fare tonight will play a significant role in shaping the race in the next handful of states to vote.Mr. Sanders was on 28 per cent, a small drop of 2 percentage points compared with last week, followed by Mr. Biden on 21 per cent, as he was when the poll was conducted last week.
Pete Buttigieg, the outsider former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, was in third place on 15 per cent, a surge of five points, just ahead of Elizabeth Warren, the progressive Massachusetts senator, on 14 per cent, up two.Amy Klobuchar, the moderate Minnesota Senator who had entertained hopes of a late boost from fellow mid-westerners, was a limp fifth on 11 per cent.A victory for Mr. Sanders, who had a heart attack in October, would give him a significant advantage heading into next week’s New Hampshire primary. He already leads in polls in the state, and he won it in 2016.
But the poll also exposes how divided Democrats are by age as they decide who is best-placed to defeat President Trump. Among 18 to 49-year-olds Mr. Sanders, 78, was the overwhelming favorite, on 45 per cent. Mr. Buttigieg, 38, had the support of 15 per cent of this group, followed by Mrs. Warren, 70, on 14 per cent. Mr. Biden, 77, had the support of just 7 per cent in this age group, and Ms. Klobuchar, 59, was backed by a paltry 3 per cent. Among the over-50s it was almost a mirror image. Mr. Biden was top on 33 per cent, followed by Ms. Klobuchar on 18 per cent. Mr. Buttigieg was backed by 14 per cent, Mrs. Warren by 13 per cent and Mr. Sanders by only 12 per cent.
While Mr. Sanders’s supporters will be enthused by the poll it is difficult to project directly to tonight’s results because of the drawn-out and convoluted process of caucusing. In each of Iowa’s 1,678 caucus districts, Democrats whose preferred candidate does not have the support of at least 15 per cent of those who turn out will have the chance to make a second choice from the more popular candidates. Moreover, one third of the 853 likely Democratic caucus-goers surveyed by Emerson said they might still change their minds.
Information and Image have been shared from an Article by Henry Zeffman, Des Moines, published at The Times, London, UK, on February 3rd, 2020. Image Credit: Gene J. Puskar / AP Associated Press, 2020.